Beauty Basics: 5 Great Sunscreens for Melanated Skin

After months inside, our skin is more sensitive and prone to damage then ever before—and that means your skincare routine has to be top shelf. One of the biggest myths in skincare culture is that Black people don’t need sunscreen. It isn’t true. SPF is a product that Black and Brown people should not ignore,” says Tiffany L Torrence, licensed aesthetician and CEO of SBK Cosmetics & Skincare. “While we are protected by melanin, the harmful rays of the sun don’t discriminate.”

She adds: “Furthermore, if you are actively treating skin for acne or discoloration, you should use an SPF.  The active ingredients that are fixing those issues mixed with harmful UV rays can damage the skin.” Experts advise that sunscreen should be applied every single day—despite clouds or sunshine—for maximum benefits.

There are many benefits to adding sunscreen to your daily routine. The added layer of protection prevents premature aging, further scarring and hyperpigmentation, which helps create a smooth texture and even skin tone. Additionally, Zinc, which is an active ingredient in sunscreen, has anti-inflammatory properties that help treat skin irritation.

Thankfully it is 2021 and Black people have more skin care options. Brands have begun formulating sunscreen that doesn’t wash out brown skin tones and actually enhances our glow while serving as a protective barrier. Remember to protect your melanin daily with at least two finger length amounts of sunscreen during application, smooth it into your neck and all throughout your face and continue to glow.

Having trouble finding a great sunscreen? We  EBONY asked a compiled a list of a few top picks for Black skin.

The names says it all, Black Girl Sunscreen ($15.99) is a Black owned brand that hit the nail on the head with its formula. This product doubles as a moisturizing lotion, is formulated with natural nourishing ingredients such as avocado oil, jojoba and cacao. The creme blends in with no white cast, and leaves a gentle, dewy glow. 

Supergoop’s Unseen Sunscreen ($34) has become a favorite for make-up lovers and people who don’t want the glossy look. With an effective SPF of 40, this product is lightweight, sheer, formulated for all skin types and leaves a velvety finish. Use it as a practical barrier and enjoy perfectly oil balanced and protected skin—that’s also ready for  make-up application. 

Neutrogena is a dermatologist recommended brand that has tons of options, but one is definitely a favorite amongst the Black skincare blogger community. The Hydro Boost Water Gel Lotion Sunscreen’s ($11.99) soft jelly-like texture instantly melts into the skin, leaving no white residue. This sunscreen is water resistant, has a non-greasy finish and is completely invisible. Best of all it’s long-lasting.

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Courtesy photo of Getty Images


As if Rihanna creating this sunscreen doesn’t sell it through enough, Fenty Skin Hydra Vizor Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Sunscreen ($35) is a 2 in 1 refillable moisturizer and sunscreen that is truly invisible for all skin tones. It claps back at dark spots, discoloration and dehydration. Plus, it’s flawless blend leaves you make-up ready. It boosts and brightens skin instead of leaving it with that chalky residue we all hate. 



The Bolden Brightening Moisturizer is an SPF 30 ($28) triple threat.  It easily blends into the skin with a smooth balanced texture and leaves no white cast. This product contains vitamin C, SPF protection and also works as your everyday moisturizer. This Black owned brand carefully crafted this formula to provide brightening and corrective properties, and to help fight everyday damage. 

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